Feb 20, 2023Liked by William Poulos

Thanks for this piece. I fell under the spell of New Atheism and rationalist secularism during my undergrad years. By stepping back from their rhetoric and seeing their own fideistic blind spots could one evaluate the deficiencies of such a narrative. The writings of David Bentley Hart have been instrumental in “breaking the spell” of Pinker et al. historical revisionism.

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Feb 18, 2023·edited Feb 18, 2023Liked by William Poulos

Excellent piece! Similar to your experience of Hitchens I was raised with a great love for liberal society. It was only in the last 5 years I began to see how untrue it was to the very values it claimed to support. Liberal societies claim to be the most rational and yet now can no longer recognize what male and female means. They claim to be free and yet their citizens are the most enslaved to their passions and their states demands.

I would be interested if you have come across New Polity. They are an interesting post liberal group based in the Steubenville in the USA. I don't agree with everything they say but they have interesting critiques of the liberal position and do a good job of raising attention to it's underlying assumptions.

Similarly have you come across the writing's of pope Pius XI who himself critiqued elements of liberalism in his encyclical Quadragesimo anno. Which follows on from Leo XIII's writings in Rerum Novarum

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Mar 12, 2023·edited Mar 12, 2023Liked by William Poulos

Really enjoyed your piece.I’m disappointed in Johnston (and Hitchens).As,” fearless”, non tribal liberals they still have blind spots and sneer at those who have eschewed liberalism for a conservative POV-which on some level appears more like the old-left values. Everything is in a twist these days.

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Jul 3, 2023Liked by William Poulos

Thanks for that. Indeed, if you look at history closely and try to really get into what past thinkers were up to, you realize that the whole Enlightenment story is more of a "creation myth" developed in the 19th and 20th centuries. We are just so used to it that we think it's the universal truth, which is the reason some of the Enlightenment warriors get away with their talking points. Lots of unquestioned assumptions.

You might be interested in this piece where I go into more detail about some of the issues: https://luctalks.substack.com/p/the-forgotten-esoteric-roots-of-modernity

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As with most things, the (a?) truth can only be found by "following the money".

While I applaud the goal that everyone should have equal opportunity, the goal that everyone should have equal outcomes reminds me of Dylan who sang

"While others say don’t hate nothing at all

Except hatred."

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Here ya go William ...

Just Google "christopher hitchens c-span kissinger"

Several links there ...

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His stance on God and religion has gone a long way in distracting us from his more damaging work ...

Hitchens sold out with his decision to become a guest expert on FOX to push the the "evil Saddam" narrative ... but Hitchens was at his best in a 2001 interview on C-SPAN, "The Case Against Henry Kissinger" ... and in '87 he broke a story while writing for THE NATION that now stands as my very first shocking political revelation ... in the midst of the IRAN-CONTRA scandal, he identified Oliver North as THE key figure in a covert "GIDO" arrangement with the Contras ... G-I-D-O: "Guns in Drugs out" ... Sen. John Kerry's report later documented an entry in North's diary on July 12, 1985 in which Gen Richard Secord told him "14m to finance arms came from drugs" ... and if not a FOX commentator in the strict sense, he was a regular contributor ... I was not a fly on the wall during his backroom negotiations with FOX but his decision to push the story that Saddam actually posed a material threat to the U.S. was so contrary to his reason-based perspectives, that money had to be an incentive ... it was during this period that he also pushed a false story that tended to minimize the Abu Ghraid abuses, suggesting they were not related to interrogations ... I believe he was corrupted and in this regard, was a real pioneer and ground-breaker ... arguably the first far-left intellectual to sell his thoughts for consumption by TV viewers who preferred to be spoon-fed news and opinion rather than read books and newspapers ... I now tend to compare Hitchens to his modern-day counterpart, Chris Hedges ... Hitchens took the money to push a theory that was eventually discredited ... and by furthering the "evil Saddam" narrative, he essentially did the bidding of the DS by bolstering the case for endless war in the middle east ... and once the lockdowns were declared in 2020, Hedges broke his many implicit promises to be there for the working class and allowed himself to be coerced into selective silence ... he has still not publicly commented on the vax mandates, vax passports or the Canadian and U.S. trucker convoys ... all of which severely impacted or sought redress for the working class ...

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